Sunday, December 25, 2016

Merry Christmas! Have Some Snippets!

Oh, and for the record, if you'll head over to the AA blog, you can find a lovely short story over there staring everyone's favorite Reutra.

So I've been tagged by Claire Banschbach to do the Snippet Tag. As someone who enjoys a chance to share my snippets at any chance I get, of COURSE I'm going to do this. First, rules, though.

-Include the fancy-shmancy graphic I included somewhere in your post. (Or make your own, just so long as you include a link back to my blog.)
-Answer all the questions, however you want to. Creative interpretation is key here! You can use the book you’re currently working on to answer the questions, or other books you’ve started or have written.
-Tag 2-5 other bloggers.

I'm going to use Love and Memory; Worth of a King; and Rocks for this, since those have been my main projects at the moment. And I'll likely give multiple snippets per answer because I'm generous like that. You're welcome.

1. Share your most gripping, fascinating, and hooking first line of a story.

“I can’t,” Clara declared running off of the mat. “I just can’t do it.”

A Queen sat on a balcony in her castle, various instruments for measurement scattered about her, mixed in with the notes she was taking.

2. Share a snippet that literally just crushes your heart into a million feelsy little pieces.

“So, there’s something wrong with your mom?” said Andrew, as she pulled him through the hallways. He knew she said that it wasn’t exactly something wrong, but it did involve her mom, so it seemed like a good place to start.
Her grip on his hand tightened. “Nothing that hasn’t been wrong for the last twenty years,” she answered.
“Oh, so…” He did hate it when she led him on a guessing game.
“She fell off a trapeze twenty years ago and hurt herself,” Clara explained. “I know that I’ve told you about that. Same old problem that she’s had for twenty years. Normally, it isn’t an issue, just when…” She took a long, shuddering breath. “My mom is pregnant.”
“Ah,” said Andrew, scrunching up his forehead. “But shouldn’t you be excited about finally getting a younger brother or sister?”
“If I get the brother or sister, I’ll be excited,” Clara answered, her voice flat. “I told you it could be something very good … but my mom has had ten miscarriages. That is something that you never want to watch your mother go through, trust me, Andrew.”

“I … I don’t doubt it,” Andrew mumbled.

She turned back and stared at her Grandmother. "She talked about ... the Tiger."
Gran tensed.  “And what did she have to say about my Jonathan?”
Roxanne shrugged. “Nothing that no one else has to say,” she admitted. She stared at her Grandmother a long moment.
Yvonne Dially was a unique woman – one of the very few who had successfully made a change from villain to hero post-graduation – though it had never been her desire and the change had cost her dearly. After twenty years of the staged fights, her husband, Jonathan Dially – her hero, the Tiger – had snapped one day, turned into his animal and started running through the streets shooting people. Many were injured that day, some even died.
Proper protocol for an episode like this was to contact the Academy and wait for them to send an “official” hero to deal with the matter. But though Yvonne did contact the Academy, she learned that it’d be over an hour before the nearest hero could make it. She wasn’t one to wait. She donned her own suit, and Flower Garden took Tiger down within minutes. People from the Academy arrived later that day and took him back to strip him of his power – and his life in the process. Yvonne nearly faced the same fate for not following protocol, but given the situation, they decided that she hadn’t really had a choice, and allowed her to make the change to hero and sent in a new villain. 

3. Share a snippet that makes you want to shout to the world that you’re SO. HAPPY.

He was about to turn away and leave them alone when Clara looked up and a smile broke across her face. The next moment, her arms were around his neck and he was falling. Automatically, he wrapped one arm around her waist, while he thrust the other behind him to catch them.
“That excited to see me?” he whispered in her ear – it was next to his mouth anyway – once he was sure that they had fallen safely.
“Nah,” she said, pulling back. “I just remembered that I like you better at my eye level.”
“Right.” Andrew nodded, taking in the glittering brightness of her eyes. “Now I remember. How could I forget that your eye level is me on the floor?”
Her eyes narrowed, and she leaned in. “You are out of shape, Tom Canty. That shouldn’t have knocked you down.”
Andrew sighed. “I know. I just don’t get many chances to practice.”
“Well, we’re going to have to do something about that,” she declared, pulling back again. “That was a warning, by the way. Be on your guard. Come off of it and you’ll be on the floor again.”
Andrew chuckled. “Consider me warned, Alice.”
She gave a sharp nod. “Good.” With that, she stood and scampered back to her father, leaving Andrew to awkwardly regain his feet. He gave a quiet sigh. It wasn’t fair – she got back her pre-kids body, while he was shoved back into this awkward form that felt too small, yet the limbs too long. It was only made worse by the fact that he knew his potential.

He was pretty certain that he was going to spend the next few days predominately on the floor.

“Oh! I knew it, Sidi,” Nadilynn cried as Obsidia and Delaney descended from the platform. “I knew it!”
Delaney laughed and pulled Obsidia closer. “Did you now? I thought that you were quite befuddled and had no idea at all who Obsidia had chosen.”
“Oh, Del, that was the fun of it,” Nadilynn countered. “Making you think that you had me completely befuddled. But I’ve seen the looks the two of you have been giving each other. You couldn’t have been more obvious if you tried.”
Obsidia blushed as she looked up at Delaney. “Do – do you think anyone else noticed?”
“Your mother, undoubtedly,” Nadilynn answered. “And she isn’t excited about it. Do you see the glares she’s giving you? She doesn’t approve one bit, but what’s new? She makes her distaste for Father no secret.”
“Not that I blame her,” said Delaney. “From all accounts, she loved King Edson very much, and she would resent Father for his death.” He removed Obsidia’s hand from his arm and gave it to Nadilynn. “Now I’d love to stay and talk, but I’m afraid that Father has some business for me to attend to. Enjoy your gossip and I’ll be back for a dance, Sidi.”
“And she will look forward to that,” said Nadilynn. “But only if you hurry back. Don’t presume too much on her patience!”
Delaney laughed and melted into the crowd.

4. Share a snippet that gives a bit of insight into one of your most favorite characters ever.

“Intriguing,” Roxanne admitted. “So you said you were going to train me?”
“As best I can,” said Mr. Angelo. “To begin with, will you levitate this rock for me? Take it straight to the ceiling if you can.”
Roxanne squinted at the rock he indicated. It was about a yard in diameter and half as tall. She moved much larger rocks with hardly a thought all of the time. There had to be a catch.
Sure enough, as soon as she had it a foot off of the ground, she encountered resistance. Mr. Angelo was pushing down on the rock with every bit of power that he had. She frowned. He was testing her raw strength. He could have said so up front.
She raised on hand, then the other, to help focus her power. No one knew for certain why hand motions helped elementals control their various elements, but they did. Roxanne tried to avoid them most of the time, but sometimes they were necessary.
She refrained from reaction as she saw that he added his hands as well. He she was taking every bit of strength that he had as well.
They stood like that for several minutes, neither moving the rock an inch, but each pouring in every ounce of power that they had. This was turning into a contest of who could last the longest, and she rather suspected that it would be him, since he was older and had been developing his power for far longer than she had.
She would have to resort to cleverness. Very well.
She glanced at him a moment, and noted how strained he appeared. And how he wasn’t paying attention to her at all.
Roxanne squeezed her hands together, and the rock squeezed into a long pole in response. Mr. Angelo was not prepared for the rock to suddenly change shape, so she was able to push through his control and embed the pole in the ceiling.
They stared at each other for a long moment, then a slow smile pulled at the corner of his mouth and he began to chuckle.

“It’s in the ceiling,” she said, simply.

“No, you don’t,” Nadilynn countered. “You’re the daughter of the previous king, no good for a political alliance. Not like I am.” She gave yet another exaggerated sigh – she enjoyed overusing them. “You are the people’s favorite, though – some just can’t get over the fact that Father won the throne fair and square – and allowing you to marry Del will do much to placate them. But me – ah – you thought that your suitors were there to court you? Ah, no. They were just there for an early chance at me.”
“Well, have you decided which of them you prefer?” asked Delaney. “Don’t try to tell me that you haven’t already formed your opinions.”
“Not that my opinions will do me any good,” Nadilynn grumbled. “I fear that Father already has me as good as sold off already.”
“Well, perhaps you’ll be lucky and it will be the perfect prince for you,” Obsidia suggested. “Your father is an ambitious man, but not cruel, so far as I can tell.”
“Yes, but I’m the worthless girl-child who stole our mother from him,” Nadilynn countered. “Ah, but I bet that he’s just thrilled to know that he’s so close to finally being rid of me.”
“Nadi, will you please stop being ridiculous?” asked Delaney, giving an exasperated sigh.
“You have no sympathy!” Nadilynn cried, indignant. “Neither of you have any sort of pity for my plight!”
“We have sympathy enough,” Delaney answered. “We’re just not in the habit of bestowing it on dramatics.”
“Dramatics!” Nadilynn all-but shrieked. “Is that what you think this is? Delaney, I’m frightened for my future here, and all you want to do is make fun of me!”

5. Share a snippet that literally melts you into a puddle of adorable, squishy, OTP mush.

ROCKS AU bit that I wrote because the real timeline broke my heart:
Dad just nodded and retreated into his office. Roxanne closed the “door” behind him. Roxanne took a deep breath, and summoned her own suit from the ground. As soon as she had slid the mask on, and her thoughts had relaxed into ROCKS’s, she waved a hand and opened the wall where William waited.
“Rox,” he began, then his eyes widened as he saw her. “Wha – what is going on? Where’s…”
Roxanne gave a practiced laugh and smirk. “Oh, William, sorry about that. I had to have a quick word with Daddy, first, prepare him and all.”
William glanced up and down the hallway. “Where’s … what did you do with Roxanne?”
Roxanne laughed again. “Oh, William. Are you that blind? Are you really that convinced that your beloved Roxanne is so good and pure that you can’t recognize her when she stands before you?”
She stepped towards him. He flinched, but didn’t bolt. Very good. She took his face between her hands. He still didn’t run. She kissed him.
He kissed her back.
“Years ago, you asked me what power I’d have, if I had one,” she said, pulling away, raising the floor beneath her feet so that she looked him in the eye. “That was such an easy question to answer, because it was an answer I knew. But then you made me into a hero, into Diamondz, and that is where you went wrong. I am no hero. I am ROCKS.”
Then she pulled away, returning the floor to its place. She spread her arms wide, playing her suit to its every advantage. “You’re the first civilian to see my new outfit. How do you like it?”
“It … you’re a villain,” William finally managed.

Roxanne laughed again. “Oh, yes, yes indeed. The Academy wouldn’t dream of wasting my talents on hero-ing. Come now, Daddy’s in costume and ready to speak with you. Please don’t take it personally if he seems a bit frosty.”

“Reuben, do not climb into my suitcase,” said Petra, as he walked into her bedroom.
“I wasn’t thinking of it,” Reuben countered.
“Yes, you were,” she answered, turned around to face him.
Reuben glanced down guiltily. “Yeah, I was. Sorry?”
“What are you doing in my bedroom?”
“Talking to you,” he said with a shrug. He put a hand on her shoulder. “Do you have to go? I’m going to miss you so much…”
“Obviously,” said Petra, removing his hand and turning back to her packing. “Or else you wouldn’t have hatched a brilliant plan to climb into my suitcase while I wasn’t looking. Did you honestly think I wouldn’t notice?”
“I knew you would notice,” he answered. “I was hoping you’d laugh.”
“Watch, I’ll show you.”
Before Petra could protest, he yanked her empty suitcase off of her bed, set it on the floor, and sat down cross-legged inside.
“Reuben!” She cried, spinning around.
He just stared up at her with a pathetic expression. “Take me with you, Petra.”
Petra sighed. “Out of my suitcase, I am trying to pack.”
“You smiled!” he exclaimed, a broad grin spreading across his own face.
“Out!” Petra ordered, pointing to outside of the suitcase.

6. Share a snippet that gets you beaming with pride and you’re just like yep, I wrote that beauty.

Sure enough, there was Jennifer, stalking towards them with a hand on her hip like she ruled the world. “Chocolate Chip! How did you girls know that those were my favorites?”
“Because you always take two whenever anyone else makes them,” Roxanne answered, without flinching. “I suppose you’re here to take yours?”
“Of course,” said Jennifer, reaching in and pulling out two of the largest cookies. Then she gave a strangled cry of fury as she tried to bite into one. “Do you cook with actual rocks, Roxanne
“Sometimes,” Roxanne admitted, biting into one of the cookies – savoring the softness and gooiness. “Gives me more control, you know.”
Jennifer narrowed her eyes. “Are you challenging me?”
Roxanne gave a slow blink. “It’s not Friday. You only accept challenges on Friday. I’ve given you your demanded cookies, how does that in any way equal a challenge?”
“I’m watching you Roxanne,” Jennifer warned.
“Fair enough,” said Roxanne. “I’m watching you, too."

“It grows late, dear. Do you intend to come to bed?”
She turned to see her husband standing in the doorway. “It’s easier to observe the stars when they’re dimmer and further apart,” she answered. “I think Vilar will be the next to fall.”
“How soon?”
“Some time in the next twenty years,” the queen answered. “It’s hard to give exact estimates when it’s this early.”
“Any idea what its power will be?”
“It’s hard to say.” The queen began stacking the papers together. “It’s a larger star, though, from my estimate, and one of the golds, so it’s bound to be potent.”
Vilar is falling.” Her husband shook his head. “What might that portend?”
“Our stars are powerful, but they don’t tell the future.” The queen carefully stood, making sure she didn’t break any of her instruments. “I know that they had silly ideas in our old world, but you would do well to put them out of your head. There’s no point in second-guessing the future.”

7. Share a snippet of genius, deliciously witty dialogue between your characters.

“Petra, we need to talk.”
Petra rolled her eyes. “Obviously if you’re sitting on my bed.”
“Petra, it’s about you and Reuben,” Summer added. “We’ve been noticing…”
“Noticing what?” asked Petra, folding her arms over her chest. “That we’re doing just fine and that you really don’t have to worry about us?”
“All right, you’re in denial,” said Sarah. “Petra, You and Reuben are not all right and you know it.”
“I didn’t say we were all right,” Petra countered. “I said we were just fine. Yes, we’re going though some struggles right now, but we’re working through them.”
“And it’s not just us noticing,” Summer continued. “I was talking to Erin and Jessica just last Sunday, and they were legit worried about a return of the French and Indian War.”
“Legit isn’t proper grammar, Summer.”
Summer rolled her eyes. “Whatev.” This time she didn’t purposefully to annoy Petra. “Look, the point is – other people are noticing the tension between the two of you, people who don’t know that you were married for thirty years in another world.”

“Why were you even talking to Jessica and Erin anyways,” asked Petra. “I thought we’d made it clear that they were a bad influence on you.”

"You have a plan," Myr announced one evening, as Roxanne was turning on her computer for her computer literacy class that she was taking.
Roxanne blinked. "Really? What makes you so sure about that."
"You've got that smirk on your face. The 'I'm going to take down everyone in this room with just a crowbar' smirk that you had right before you challenged X to that fight," Myr explained. “So I’d like to know what you’re plotting and if I can get in on it this time.”
Nope, she didn’t need a reason to talk to Myr about the plot at all.
“You may ‘get in on it this time,’” Roxanne answered, logging into her computer. “Actually, I’ve been planning on asking you if you want to help me.”
“Ooh!” cried Myr, rushing over to Roxanne’s side of the room. “What do you need me to do? Electrocute everyone?”
Roxanne’s eyebrow flickered. “Perhaps eventually. But for now, I need your knowledge of the other girls.”
“Are you going to challenge them, too?”
“Myr, you are the friendliest villain in the dorm,” said Roxanne. “If there is anyone here that knows the others, and who has any semblance of their trust, it’d be you.”

“I’m also generally regarded as the most insane and they barely tolerate me,” Myr pointed out. “Sorry to disappoint.”

8. Share a snippet that makes you feel like an evil genius for thinking up such a malevolent villain (Mwa-ha-ha!)

ROCKS: (So far the only one with a present villain thus far)
She surfaced without fanfare just a few feet away from the line of policemen. There was a circle of them all the way around the mountain, in ten-foot increments, facing outwards. They all seemed uneasy, but they were clearly there more to keep people out than to keep her in. It was amusing, these people who had never had to deal with a villain before in their lives. Give them a year, and they’d get used to her. But for now…
She gave a mocking laugh, and sidled up to the man nearest her – he appeared to be in his forties and had a mustache. “You know, I’m personally of the opinion that, if a person is brave enough to go hiking on the mountain where a supervillain lives, they deserve to be left alone.”
Roxanne never saw so many grown men jump so fast. Within moments, she had at least ten guns pointed at her. It would have been a bit disconcerting if she hadn't specially designed her suite to resist such impact.
"Don't move, or we'll shoot!" one of the men warned.
"Oh, you will?" asked Roxanne, she tilted her head back and laughed. "Oh, go ahead. I'd love to see it. You'd really shoot a woman?”
"You're no woman, no proper woman, leastways," one of the other men growled. "You're one of those Super people and a villain to boot. We didn't ask for you in our town, and we'd be more than happy if you'd leave."
"Oh, but it's such a nice town, and so strategically close to the nation’s capital," Roxanne answered. "I'm sorry, but I'm here to stay – at least until I can move to that shiny building where they make the laws."
"I'm warning you ... you..."

"It's ROCKS," Roxanne informed him. "All caps. Capital R, capital O, capital C ... etcetera. And if those guns make you feel better, by all means point them at me. They don't bother me one bit."

9. Share a snippet that leaves you breathless, in a cold sweat with action-induced intensity.

ROCKS (Also the only one with much action ... I'm not an action writer):
"We're trained to shoot," another man warned.
"And I'm trained to do this." Roxanne stamped her foot and the whole mountain trembled. Except for Mim's room. She didn't want to scare the poor little civilian who had no idea what was going on. "So if you think it'll do you any good, feel free to do what you're trained to do and shoot me."
She waited a few minutes, no one dared.
"Oh, you boys really are no fun at all." She clucked her tongue and shook her head. "Now if you were proper heroes, you wouldn't have hesitated a moment - and I know, I've tangled with quite a number of heroes in my time. Here, let me show you."
She reached out a hand and pointed to the gun nearest her, trained at her heart. She hooked her finger. The gun's trigger pulled in response, letting loose the bullet. The bullet flew towards her with lightning speed ... then bounced harmlessly off.
"Boys, I'm afraid those toys of yours would do no good against me," she informed them. "You're out of your league, so I'd recommend you back away and leave my mountain well and alone. We'll all be happier for it, I assure you."
Her only answer was the firing of a number more guns. She rolled her eyes, let a few bounce off of her armor, then caught the rest in mid-air. She held them suspended for several seconds, then sent the bullets flying back to the men who had shot them. The men jumped out of the way so fast, Roxanne could barely contain her amusement.
“Oh, boys, boys, when I said they’d be no good against me, I really meant it.”

Waving her hand, Roxanne gathered all of the guns and carefully deposited them in a pile at her feet. "Now that we have that taken care of, let's discuss the matter civilly. Yes, I'm an evil villain intent on taking over the country and ruling it for myself, but I'm a benevolent evil villain intent on taking over the country and ruling it for myself. I really do care about the people. I just want to be the one who tells them what to do. Because there are a number of idiots currently being the ones telling people what to do and I think that I'll do a much better job."

10. Share a snippet of a most interesting first meeting between your characters.

WoaK (Adrian and Obsidia meet for the "first" time):
Obsidia was relieved when they finally reached their destination and they stopped in front of the wonderful little printshop. She breathed deeply of the heady scent of ink and paper as they stepped inside. Then she gasped as she saw that paper was scattered all over the floor, two boys hastily trying to gather it up while a man – clearly their father – was standing to greet the visitors.
“Well, well,” he said, his gaze sweeping over the group, but resting the longest on Obsidia. “What have we here?”
Instead of explaining their reason for coming, Christa had a question of her own. “I thought that Jerolin was working with the blacksmith now.”
One of the young men looked up and settled a glare on Delaney, for some reason. “I am,” he admitted. “But Garen gave me the day off so I decided to help out here with the big order.” This must have been Jerolin.
“You’re helping,” giggled Christa. “It looks like you spilled a book.”
“Three would be more accurate,” said the other young man – Adrian, by reason of elimination. “It’ll take hours to get it sorted back out. We were just debating…” he trailed off as he looked up and noticed the guests. “Oh.”

His eyes met with Obsidia’s, and suddenly the world melted away in their oddly familiar depths.

ROCKS: (First meeting between Roxanne and Myr)
“This seat taken?”
Roxanne looked up to see a girl with blue eyes and blue hair cut in an uneven pixie and holes purposefully cut into the knees of her jeans, standing in front of her, pointing to the chair next to hers. She shrugged. She didn’t want company, but she couldn’t lie and say that the chair was taken. Though technically she could say that it belonged to her brother.
Before she could make that claim, however, the girl was sitting, her boots propped up on the chair in front of her. “That was real sweet of them, you know.”
“No, I don’t know,” said Roxanne, considering her options for getting this girl away from her.
“It’s not like we’re going to kill each other or anything, but here we are, our first day of true freedom, and guess what? No powers. How are they even doing it?”
Roxanne shrugged. “No idea.”
“I’m Myr, by the way,” she said. “I do electricity. You?”
“Roxanne, rocks.”
“Gorgeous. We’d make the pair, wouldn’t we? I’m hoping to get villain – they have all the fun, you know, even if we can’t ever win. You?”
“Don’t really care, but they’re probably going to give me villain. I look like one.”
“So do I,” said Myr. “Sweet. Maybe we’ll get to be roommates!”

Merry Christmas, one and all!

1. Share your most gripping, fascinating, and hooking first line of a story.
2. Share a snippet that literally just crushes your heart into a million feelsy little pieces.
3. Share a snippet that makes you want to shout to the world that you’re SO. HAPPY.
4. Share a snippet that gives a bit of insight into one of your most favorite characters ever.
5. Share a snippet that literally melts you into a puddle of adorable, squishy, OTP mush.
6. Share a snippet that gets you beaming with pride and you’re just like yep, I wrote that beauty.
7. Share a snippet of genius, deliciously witty dialogue between your characters.
8. Share a snippet that makes you feel like an evil genius for thinking up such a malevolent villain (Mwa-ha-ha!)
9. Share a snippet that leaves you breathless, in a cold sweat with action-induced intensity.
10. Share a snippet of a most interesting first meeting between your characters.

1 comment:

  1. Merry Christmas! And yay, snippets! I enjoyed reading these very much indeed. :D


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